What do history's most notorious despots have in common with many of the flag-waving, patriotic politicians of our day? Both groups rise to power through the exploitation of fear, which has become a societal plague. There have been widespread casualties. We need an antidote. Feardom offers its readers a much-needed immunization.
photo credit: QuestionMark
Igitur qui desiderat pacem, praeparet bellum
This latin phrase means “Therefore, he who desires peace, let him prepare for war.” There is wisdom in these words that is further accentuated with an understanding of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
The gospel is a message of peace unto all those who receive it. But that peace comes only when our faith and works are in unison—when what we claim to believe and what we actually do are in harmony. As King Benjamin said, “…if you believe all these things see that ye do them.” Likewise, Ian Guwler said:
Peace of mind occurs when our actions match our beliefs. (via Quoty)
The actions we are commanded to do are often related to preparation for war, be it literal or spiritual. We are to prepare for the unknown. That encompasses war, man-made disasters, “natural” disasters, unforseen accidents or anything unexpected. Repeatedly have we as Saints received prophetic counsel to get out of debt, store a year’s supply of food and supplies, pursue education, and increase temple attendance (among a plethora of other things).
Peace will only be ours if we comply with these divine mandates. God has said that if we are prepared, we need not fear. Are our preparations complete? When disaster strikes, will we feel peace knowing that we are sufficiently prepared for the events to come? Or will we have procrastinated the day of our preparation? Of note, President Benson once said:
As a people it seems we can better endure persecution than we can peace and prosperity. (via Quoty)
The scriptures—a historically prophetic model for our own day—warn of sloth and indolence among the Saints. Christ taught of unwise virgins who delayed their preparations and were found unprepared when the Savior came to meet them. Amidst our peace and prosperity, many Saints have told themselves that he delayeth his coming, absolving themselves of any initiative or desire to prepare.
These unwise servants will someday be rebuked. Do we fit in this category, or are we preparing every needful thing? Are we buying big screen TVs and new cars when we have colossal debt and minimal storage? Do we waste money on buying the latest DVD when such items will be absolutely useless if and when there is an economic collapse?
Will we be able to feel peace when war comes to our land? When ATMs are cleared out, the dollar collapses, and the local grocery store is cleaned out, will we survive?
If we are doers of the word, we understand that the peace the gospel brings is closely connected to preparation. Part of the armor of God explains this:
[Stand, having] your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; (Eph. 6:15, emphasis added)
Peace does not come without preparation.
Are you sufficiently prepared?